Getting it wrong with the Globe and Mail

Quality and standards are what differentiate professional journalism, as practiced in our dwindling newspapers for instance, from the blogosphere, written by and for the mob. Or so we’re told. The following is from the Saturday Globe and Mail – the Editorial and Comment page, no less.

First, from “The incredible shrinking work force” by Doug Saunders (quoting author Ted Fishman):

“Given China’s age structure today,” Mr. Fishman writes, “it is in the midst of a retirement avalanche … today, for every 10 working Chinese there are two elderly dependants, but by 2050, there will be six elderly dependants for every worker.”

Really? SIX old people for every worker. Is that a demographic forecast or the scenario for the next sequel to Resident Evil?

Further down on the same page is Jeffrey Simpson waxing on about how people aren’t paying enough attention to what global warming is doing to the Arctic:

The effects of warming are not exactly under the noses of most Canadians, because they are most dramatic in the Arctic, where few Canadians venture. The Arctic is too remote, forbidding and foreign for most Canadians to think much about. It’s out of sight and out of mind, a bit like the whole issue for the government.

Good thing we have a pro on the case:

As the permafrost warms, chances increase that pools of carbon previously trapped in the frozen permafrost will be released.

Note the MSM quality style: “permafrost” repeated in the same sentence (and it’s frozen, by the way). And the “pools of carbon” are not literally pools, in case anyone got that impression.


. . . more water instead of ice means more reflected sunlight, which, in turn, contributes to warming . . .

Actually more water instead of ice means less reflected sunlight. More sunlight is absorbed by the water, which gets warmer, melting more ice, and so on.

The third column on the page, Margaret Wente’s reflections on the limits of medical knowledge, was well-written and howler-free. In fact, you could call it professional.